More firms in western Japan raising prices, says BOJ official

TOKYO (Reuters) - More companies in western Japan are embarking on price hikes as rising raw material costs squeeze their profits, a senior Bank of Japan official said on Wednesday.

While wage hikes may spread among firms that saw profits rise, many companies in the region seem to prefer compensating workers with bonuses rather than raising regular pay, Hirohide Koguchi, the BOJ's Osaka branch manager, told a news conference.

(Reporting by Leika Kihara; Editing by Chang-Ran Kim)

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